Denon/Marantz vs Yamaha vs Anthem Thread

V

VMPS-TIII

Audioholic General
That is the speaker/room response in the room, not an FR of an amp, no? And, we don't really know, I don't, what the speaker's anechoic response is.
Thanks to 3dB, william and mtrycraft for sharing their views. It's great to hear from others including those who hold opposing views and don't mind sharing their findings/evidence, or just experience.
My guess is those who responded may not understand much about the Hegel H90 or how I had it setup for testing. If after I explain this you still think all audio gear sounds the same then we must have different ears.

Setup #1
The Hegel H90 is an integrated amp. It has a DAC with USB interface, preamp, streamer and obviously an amp section. These sections all work together in a single case. In my test, I used the USB DAC of the Hegel H90 to interface with Audirvana on the MBP.

Setup #2
The Denon 4700 is an AVR that most are familiar with. It does not offer a USB input so the UPnP DLNA interface was used with the 4700 via the same Audirvana software on the MBP.

To compare the two in my latest test I played the same songs at a matched volume of 75dB on both units as determined by REW pink noise. Then I turned the unit off and moved the same BMR banana plus to the other unit and played the same song(s). This move between units occurred several times. The Hegel H90 setup offered enhanced clarity and tighter bass with the BMRs to my ears. I was disappointed as I had thought the 4700 might have some other advantages.

If you guys believe every integrated amp with internal USB DACs sound the same then probably no reason to try to determine which section of the H90 is causing the enhanced benefit. In that case, we have to disagree. I have heard several different receivers, DACs and integrated amps that don't sound the same. If everything not sounding the same somehow takes this thread off the guard rails then I am laughingly amused. :D
 
mazersteven

mazersteven

Audioholic Warlord
Maybe I'm wrong but I could swear I read that Hegel themselves stated that their amp the H90 is designed to be as Neutral as possible not to color what the Sound Engineers wanted you to hear. That their amp is designed for one thing and one thing only to give clean undistorted power
 
mtrycrafts

mtrycrafts

Audioholic Slumlord
Maybe I'm wrong but I could swear I read that Hegel themselves stated that their amp the H90 is designed to be as Neutral as possible not to color what the Sound Engineers wanted you to hear. That their amp is designed for one thing and one thing only to give clean undistorted power
Then, it is a transparent amp. Case closed.
 
mtrycrafts

mtrycrafts

Audioholic Slumlord
My guess is those who responded may not understand much about the Hegel H90 or how I had it setup for testing. If after I explain this you still think all audio gear sounds the same then we must have different ears.

...

If you guys believe every integrated amp with internal USB DACs sound the same then probably no reason to try to determine which section of the H90 is causing the enhanced benefit. In that case, we have to disagree. I have heard several different receivers, DACs and integrated amps that don't sound the same. If everything not sounding the same somehow takes this thread off the guard rails then I am laughingly amused. :D
Well, you have yet to present credible evidence, test protocol to make a determination of audibility.
Firstly, you cannot accurately level match to 0.1dB spl with REW pink noise.
Second, no mention of bias controls in place for test, nor statistical outcome of a good number of trials.
So, comment cannot be rendered about a USB DAC's audible performance.
As to ALL audio gear, that is not our position as there are and can be poorly designed components. or components that cannot handle difficult speaker loads.

If you are interested in discovering audio reality, a list of some references:
Additional Audio References (tripod.com)

This is of particular interest:
"Topological Analysis of Consumer Audio Electronics: Another Approach to Show that Modern Audio Electronics are Acoustically Transparent", Rich, David and Aczel, Peter, 99 AES Convention, 1995, Print #4053.
These authors used DBT protocol for discovery. Enjoy :)
 
P

PENG

Audioholic Slumlord
My guess is those who responded may not understand much about the Hegel H90 or how I had it setup for testing. If after I explain this you still think all audio gear sounds the same then we must have different ears.
Who said "....................all audio gear sounds the same....................", and I mean within this thread ? Please quote, as I really want to respond to such a post, or posts.

Setup #1
The Hegel H90 is an integrated amp. It has a DAC with USB interface, preamp, streamer and obviously an amp section. These sections all work together in a single case. In my test, I used the USB DAC of the Hegel H90 to interface with Audirvana on the MBP.

Setup #2
The Denon 4700 is an AVR that most are familiar with. It does not offer a USB input so the UPnP DLNA interface was used with the 4700 via the same Audirvana software on the MBP.
I said I wasn't going to repeat my previous comments, but the discussion is getting convoluted so for the benefits of the new participants I would do so when I feel necessary.

First of all, I don't know what MBP is, please clarify. Secondly, was the Denon in pure direct mode, no bass management and speakers set to large?

It is obviously important to compare the two without any signal processing involved other than DA conversion but regardless, clearly you were using two different set up, one via USB DAC input that is the best possible way for the Hegel to sound its theoretical best, whereas the Denon was via Audirvana/UUPnP DLNA so that is not an apple to apple comparison I mentioned before.

If you guys believe every integrated amp with internal USB DACs sound the same then probably no reason to try to determine which section of the H90 is causing the enhanced benefit. In that case, we have to disagree.
Good thing you included the "If", so I guess there is no disagreement on this one. Whether two set up will sound the same or not always depends on many things. In your setups, they are quite different, so of course they could sound different.

I have heard several different receivers, DACs and integrated amps that don't sound the same.
Given the example setups you described, I can imagine the reasons.

If everything not sounding the same somehow takes this thread off the guard rails then I am laughingly amused. :D
Again, "if" is the key word.

By the way, to the new/recent participants, below is a link to the post that prompted my many of my comments/reactions:


I do have a few questions for VPMS:

Q.1

You asked:

"So are you saying if I play the Denon CD player thru the Hegel H90 to BMR and compare that to Denon CD player to 4700 to BMR the difference will not show up? "

Have you tried that, using analog inputs for both, with no dsp, no REQ, and pure direct on the Denon, speakers set to large, no bass management, no subwoofer, just the BMR?

Q.2

In post#1089, you said:

"There are lots of characteristics that can impact the listening experience besides noise/sound. With most of today's audiophile gear meeting or beating acceptable noise/distortion levels it's important to focus on the elephant in the room - sound quality. "

So I am curious to know aside from distortions including THD, IMD, XD, Frequency, linearity, and other metrics such as SNR, DR, what else determine "sound quality".

Q.3

Hegel claimed their designs were for minimizing distortions, citing "less than 0.01%". On their website, they emphasized the importance of low distortions multiple times, and also high damping factor. Do you believe their amps sound good because of the low distortions and high damping factor, or there are something else?

Q.4

As you know, I think you heard the difference because you use two different setup, once via USB DAC while the other was streaming and for the streaming setup I don't know if you were, or even could even using the same bit rate and bit depth, sampling frequency, and sound format. You also did not mention if any dsps, REQ and bass managements were involved. That's aside from the subjective factors such as you were already anticipating the benefits of what Hegel has been propagating on their websites about their SoundEngine that ensures what they considered low distortions.

But why do you think when I compared a Denon 3400 with my Cambridge audio preamp paired with either my Halo A21 or my Bryston 4B SST using several external DAC (including Oppo's Sonica USB DAC), using analog inputs and pure direct mode, no dsp, no REQ, speaker large, and I heard little difference? Note: I don't think I have trouble hear differences between any of my speakers, and I could hear differences between levels of 1 dB, and/or EQ of a couple dB for sure as that is easy to prove too.

Lastly, I think I mentioned before that I was impressed with the H90 too, it did compare well with Hegel's much more powerful amps such as the H30, but to me they were just being transparent as other amps in the demo room, nothing special or different about the "sound quality". I have no doubt their amps were design/built to be transparent, just get out the way and let the music play kind of amps, but so is the 4700. Wouldn't it be great if a few of us could get together one day and set up our own mutually agreed AB comparison with bias removed? It would be more entertaining than betting on horses.
 
mtrycrafts

mtrycrafts

Audioholic Slumlord
...
Q.4
As you know, I think you heard the difference because you use two different setup, once via USB DAC while the other was streaming and for the streaming setup I don't know if you were, or even could even using the same bit rate and bit depth, sampling frequency, and sound format. You also did not mention if any dsps, REQ and bass managements were involved. That's aside from the subjective factors such as you were already anticipating the benefits of what Hegel has been propagating on their websites about their SoundEngine that ensures what they considered low distortions.
....
WOW, different setup chain? :eek: I didn't bother reading all that but now it is clearer. I can handle only so much as the clock marches on nonstop. :D
 
T

Trebdp83

Audioholic Field Marshall
Sooo... if I have a vague perception, does that make it a virtual reality?:confused:
So, if a guy slaps a dumb sticker on a 38 hour old post, does that make him slow or just stupid? Oh, who am I kidding, you’re all handsome geniuses. Either that or I’m slow and stupid.:D
 
killdozzer

killdozzer

Audioholic Samurai
Actually, the Hegel is the best sounding piece of gear I have and it cost less than the Denon 4700 or the P452. The Hegel H90 sound quality compared to my Denon is amazingly more defined, with much tighter mid and low bass.

If I had to give up all my amps and keep one item it would definitely be the Hegel. It sounds far superior to my ears. After spending 30 days with the Hegel H90 and my BMRs it's hard to listen to anything else.
And I would never want to spoil that for you. Remember, I told you; if you like it, you should go for it. I don't want to rain on your parade. I always use myself as an example; if I had money, the amp of my choice would be silly-expensive (for all the wrong reasons:) , meaning I wouldn't buy it for the SQ).

You seem to be in a happy place now. You bought something that thrills you and moves you. So just enjoy. All this graph posting and even comparing after you already bought it, and having graphs tell you it performs the same and then needing to reach for the "it must be something that can't be measured" argument although you just describe it as fuller in the upper lows and midds and that would easily show... It just seems like your doubting your choice.

And you shouldn't. Since you already bought it, enjoy.

I personally don't like most of the sound signatures or, as you say, amps that sound. I think I wrote that already, it's much like speaking to someone who uses a certain word too often or has a catchphrase, after awhile you feel like you can only hear that word or catchphrase. You can't hear anything else.

Most of your tests and graphs seem to support this:
 
killdozzer

killdozzer

Audioholic Samurai
So, if a guy slaps a dumb sticker on a 38 hour old post, does that make him slow or just stupid? Oh, who am I kidding, you’re all handsome geniuses. Either that or I’m slow and stupid.:D
I was also wondering about this. In another thread I sympathized with you for having second unit in a row showing some problems, and the guy puts a 'dislike' for me sympathizing with you 3 days after??

I guess:
“Researchers identify a new personality construct that describes the tendency to see oneself as a victim”
 
S

Sachb

Full Audioholic
@AcuDefTechGuy , you won't believe it, I just sold my Denon X2300W to a guy who had an Onkyo with a failing HDMI board. :) I think I will miss the Denon. There were times when I use to watch movies at midnight with the Sony RF headphones plugged to the Denon.

I hope he likes the sound, or he'll come back and ask for a refund which I don't want to. Most users who went from Onkyo to Denon complain about the lack of punchy sound, but I think his Bose speakers will cope up with the Denon.
Didn't ask which Bose series he has tho.

But I did advise him to reset the receiver so that the Audyssey mess is cleared at least. He did ask me if I had the calibration mic, so definitely he is gonna calibrate it and use it.
 
Last edited:
AcuDefTechGuy

AcuDefTechGuy

Audioholic Jedi
@AcuDefTechGuy , you won't believe it, I just sold my Denon X2300W to a guy who had an Onkyo with a failing HDMI board. :) I think I will miss the Denon. There were times when I use to watch movies at midnight with the Sony RF headphones plugged to the Denon.

I hope he likes the sound, or he'll come back and ask for a refund which I don't want to. Most users who went from Onkyo to Denon complain about the punchy sound, but I think his Bose speakers will cope up with the Denon.
Didn't ask which Bose series he has tho.

But I did advise him to reset the receiver so that the Audyssey mess is cleared at least. He did ask me if I had the calibration mic, so definitely he is gonna calibrate it and use it.
I think DM might be more popular than Yamaha. When I owned all Denon’s for a long time, that’s what I thought. So it’s no surprise to me.

Whatever works best for people is good. They just have to figure out what that is.
 
S

Sachb

Full Audioholic
I think DM might be more popular than Yamaha. When I owned all Denon’s for a long time, that’s what I thought. So it’s no surprise to me.

Whatever works best for people is good. They just have to figure out what that is.
DM is overhyped product just like an Apple or a Samsung.

I fell for the hype & suffered all these years for poor stereo performance.

Luckily, I found my ultimate Yamaha reciever. Not fond of audyssey or any other features like auro 3D crap.

If an expensive reciever can't do a basic task like putting out a quality sound in stereo listening then its a complete failure. No matter how hard you try it'll sound like poop.

Sent from my LM-G710 using Tapatalk
 
S

Sachb

Full Audioholic
Hey, I own both Apple (iPad Pro) and Samsung (S9+ Phone) products! :mad: :D
Oh..ok. I never owned any of them, instead got htc, sony & now the LG G7+ which has quad DAC. Not, that I hate samsung or iphone but they cater to the masses, whereas I'm more of a audio guy so I need better audio from my phone too.
Apple as far as I know will sound a bit better than Samsung tho.

Sent from my LM-G710 using Tapatalk
 
AcuDefTechGuy

AcuDefTechGuy

Audioholic Jedi
Oh..ok. I never owned any of them, instead got htc, sony & now the LG G7+ which has quad DAC. Not, that I hate samsung or iphone but they cater to the masses, whereas I'm more of a audio guy so I need better audio from my phone too.
Apple as far as I know will sound a bit better than Samsung tho.

Sent from my LM-G710 using Tapatalk
I don’t listen to music on any phones. I don’t even care about music in my Lexus LX 570 with its 14-speaker system from Mark Levinson. :D

The only place I really listen to music is at home on either my HT system (CX-A5100/ MX-A5000) or 2Ch system (RX-A3080). :D
 
M

Movie2099

Senior Audioholic
I don’t listen to music on any phones. I don’t even care about music in my Lexus LX 570 with its 14-speaker system from Mark Levinson. :D

The only place I really listen to music is at home on either my HT system (CX-A5100/ MX-A5000) or 2Ch system (RX-A3080). :D
My Bose in my Sierra Denali would blow that 2ch system out of the water! :D
 
P

PENG

Audioholic Slumlord
Wait, if the X8500 is mathematically "ranked #1", why didn't he just buy the X8500 and saved money? :D

What if ASR measured the a110 and got LOWER ratings? Anything is possible. :D

The a110 might have a SINAD of 102dB, which would mean it sounds 1dB worse than the 103dB X8500. Haha. Just kidding. :D
Kidding aside, I agree with you, but I also agree with him that the A110 has better odds in scoring a dB or 2 better based on apparently identical circuitry, design, but better parts (tolerances kind of stuff).
 

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